More than 5000 asylum seekers entered Norway from Russia in 2015. Photo: Thomas Nilsen

Russia opens borders for migrants with residence permits

Russia is willing to take some asylum seekers back from Norway. But they have to be sent by plane, not via Storskog.
February 03, 2016


Russian authorities are prepared to open its borders for some of the 5000 migrants that entered Norway from Russia during a few hectic months of 2015.

After a meeting in Moscow today between Norwegian and Russian authorities Director General of Norway’s Ministry of Justice Thor Arne Aass told NRK that Russia agrees to receive between 200 and 300 people with legal permits to stay in Russia.

A prerequisite from the Russian side is that the asylum seekers are sent by plane, primarily to Moscow, and that the return over the Storskog-Borisoglebsk border crossing point cease.  

Following a string of restrictive measures from Norwegian authorities, the migrant flow came to a stop, and since November 29th, not a single asylum seeker has made it to Storskog, the Norwegian border crossing point.

Before Russia closed its border to Norway for asylum seekers, some 380 people had returned to Russia, most of them on the same bicycles that they used to enter Norway.

Since January 26, no asylum seekers have been sent from Norway to Russia, after Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov said that his country would not accept people who had given false information when entering Russia.






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